Warm Weather Puts Heat on Wrigley Rink

Higher temperatures of weekend causing delays preparing rink

Right now the Chicago Blackhawks are the hottest team in the NHL.  With their victory over the Philadelphia Flyers on Friday night at the United Center the Hawks have now won eight straight games, tying a franchise mark they've only reached twice before.  Unfortunately, they aren't the only thing in town that's getting warm.

After dealing with some pretty nasty weather over the last few weeks -- freezing temperatures, snow, and icy streets -- Chicagoans are enjoying a bit of a respite this afternoon.  All the snow that has accumulated over the last few weeks is fading away as temperatures in the Chicago area approach 60 degrees this afternoon.  Of course, while the thawing out will make life easier for a few days, it's actually making things harder for the folks who have been working on the ice rink at Wrigley Field for the Winter Classic.

On Monday crews sprayed the rink with water to help thicken the ice before going home for a holiday break, but they returned on Friday to find that some of that ice had begun melting.  They were also hoping to start painting the ice this afternoon, but with the warmer temperatures and rain, that's not likely to happen.

While it's supposed to drop back down to the lower 30s tomorrow with a possibility of snow, temps will rise again on Monday and Tuesday which could end up causing further delays.  Though the NHL won't comment on the matter right now, there seems to be a possibility that the game could be postponed, with some ushers saying they were told that the contingency plan would be to have the game on January 2nd if they can't get the rink ready in time for Thursday.

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